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OuterCityMatt

Another First Map Thread

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First time map, first post here. I started messing around with Doombuilder 2 a few months ago, and after starting some over-ambitious maps that I couldn't finish I eventually ended up with this. With /idgames/ apparently uncurated this month I thought I'd make a post here so people might play my map.

http://box.outercitylimits.com/skunklm.wad

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(This map is for ZDoom, Doom2 map01, just so people know)

Visually, this looks really damn nice. Great to see a 'realistic' setting in Doom - The way blood dripped along the tiles and bricks in some areas was a really great touch. Very atmospheric, this is the right way to do detail as far as I'm concerned.

The only two things I noticed was a HOM (missing texture) on the slope in the outdoor area by the gas station. In that same room, I didn't realize there was a gap in the wood fence that leads to the blue key. Maybe put a few small items by the gap just to draw the player's eye :)

The hell part at the end looked really awesome, but I couldn't figure out what to do and where to go. Up to that point, I was really enjoying the map's atmosphere - And heck, if you could keep your weapons, I think that would have been enough to get me through, but I kept dying repeatedly so that killed my buzz slightly.

I really hope to see more, that was some great WAD craftsmanship :)

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Thanks for the kind words! I wonder if I'm doing my slopes wrong or something. My brother tested it had the same HOM error with the ramp, but it looks totally fine on my machine. I had assumed he just had an outdated version of zdoom. I'm using gzdoom 1.8.2.

As for the gap in the fence, it used to be a lot worse but I added more missing pieces of fence, and I had I guess naively assumed that would draw someone's attention there.

I guess I got a little extreme with the Hell portion, and playtesting it so many times knowing exactly where to go made me biased.

I've uploaded an updated version of the map to the same place, but with some items by the gap in the fence and textures on BOTH sides of the linedef for the ramp. I have no idea if that will fix it. I seriously don't know what's wrong with it. I also added more red torches in the Hell portion to try and guide the player through. Again, thanks for playing my map and giving me that sweet, sweet feedback.

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Stellar looking map! A lot of fine sector/linework which makes for good eyecandy. It was looking so pretty, in fact, that while I was admiring it I fell off the platform at the beginning and panicked so much that I died before even noticing the ladder out of the nukage. Heh.

Gameplay-wise, it's pretty nice. The big "laptop arena" about halfway through was the most memorable fight, with lots of circle-strafing and objects just small enough to let revenant fireballs chase through them. My biggest complaint is everything after that, really. The dark garage fight is underwhelming if you got the BFG "secret" and, given the ammo surplus, isn't too difficult without it. The hell area was so nonlinear that it was, as Doomkid said, difficult to actually figure out where to go. Eventually you figure it out, but running around weaponless save for some berserk fists with no idea where to go is frustrating after a while.

The hell area (and the wooden pathway out of it) really contrasts with the majority of the map but blends very nicely into it. It's sadly my least favorite part of the map, as very little combat has to happen in it and it isn't around for very long.

Assuming I played your updated version (I believe I did, since it was downloaded after your update post) the HOM effect by the ramp is still there. I also noticed two other glitches during my play. Screens below.

http://imgur.com/a/GNCSQ

^The first image in that album shows the fence by the gas station. While strafing with my back to it, I kept getting caught as if by an invisible wall and getting stopped.
^img1 and img2 is where I found a nonsolid floor that drops you into a HOM hole with a demon. img3 is what I believe to be that demon. Maybe it just shrinks you super tiny!

Other than those bugs the map's lovely to play! But, since it's very nonlinear and a lot of it is devoted to optional paths with weapons/ammo in it, maybe you should make more areas 'secret' to give the player more satisfaction for exploring and finding these items? (The area guarded by a chaingunner near spawn comes to mind.) Good job!

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This map was lots of fun to play. Good gameplay. I am sure those missing textures can be easily fixed.

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This is an impressive first map, I really love the sector blood splats and other bits of realism, and the harsh lighting works well. Having all my weapons taken away was funny, not sure I've seen that in a map before. Although really there isn't a lot of fighting after that anyway. I pretty much ignored the cyberdemon and made my way to the exit with tons of un-needed rockets. I guess hell still has that surreal quality to it that tells a story even if it is a bit starved of action.

For the biggest fight of the map, beyond the blue key door, I ended up shooting most of the stuff from the doorway, which made that massive room a bit of a wasted opportunity. Something to think about with future maps I guess, if you want players to fight in specific areas there are ways to keep them in there or stop them camping outside the door. I found one secret which counted as 3. Also I fell into a hom-hole in hell at this point:

Not sure what thats about. The teleporter in hell seems to have lines that work once, they should probably be repeatable. From a design point of view a lot of the early areas have a very uniform low ceiling height which makes it all feel a bit flat. But other than that its a really interesting map. Hope you make more.

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mouldy said:

This is an impressive first map, I really love the sector blood splats and other bits of realism, and the harsh lighting works well. Having all my weapons taken away was funny, not sure I've seen that in a map before. Although really there isn't a lot of fighting after that anyway. I pretty much ignored the cyberdemon and made my way to the exit with tons of un-needed rockets.

I agree with all of this. Good result for a first map. The amount and placement of detail was disproportionate up to feeling unnatural, but you will improve that with experience. Many fights were skippable, featuring monsters with high health but not punishing enough to force the player to fight them directly - that's what you should generally try to avoid, by a reasonable balance of weapon/ammo/enemy/space. Also, I wished there was more vertical combat, most battles took place on plain ground. Feel free to amplify vertical combat by more meaningful vertical architecture: Stairs, ledges and openings (etc) at varied height levels, connected with each other inside one distinct area, and filled with monsters.

I can confirm the 'hole' problem reported by mouldy - it was a weird one (I got submerged waist-deep into the floor and couldn't even jump out, because my body was actually much lower than it appeared), possibly caused by unclosed sectors. Tip to fix it: Use "make sector" function on that area. If it doesn't help, delete and redraw the surrounding place.

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Wow, this is a big response! I deleted the ramp and remade it from scratch following chubzdoomer's youtube tutorial, hopefully this will fix the HOM. And I think I also fixed the mysterious falling-through-floor in Hell part, I did in fact have to delete and remake that sector. I've removed the script that takes away your weapons and changed some of the shotgun shell boxes into just shotgun shell piles. Also fixed, the teleport was not a Repeatable Action, that was sure an easy thing to miss, never even occurred to me (thanks mouldy). It's available in a new version of the map here:

http://box.outercitylimits.com/skunklmr.zip

To be honest, I really had no plan for this map, I just sort of went room-to-room and I guess it shows, ha ha.

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The rocket launcher secret counted as 2 secrets. And this map has lots of tiny detail, you must be pretty patient.

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